Storm tests post-Irene response plans | News
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT)- Tuesday, many people in the metro were still cleaning up in the aftermath of Monday's severe weather. It appears Richmond's north side was hit hardest.
The damage reminded Richmonders of the tough times after Hurricane Irene last summer. This time, it is nowhere near as widespread. Some are calling this a test run should another Irene blow through.
Hattie Eaton was at a loss for words when she looked at her Church Hill home Tuesday.
"Oh my goodness," she exclaimed. "It's outrageous! I'm telling you, I just can't describe it."
Her living room and bedroom took the brunt of the blow. A giant tree has taken over her home and life.
"It's just upsetting me so bad," she added. "There's so many pieces."
The storm's strength shocked Eaton Monday. Mayor Dwight Jones admitted the same surprise as he toured the damage. Despite that, he says it didn't catch city government off guard in its response, as Irene did when it hovered over Central Virginia last August.
"I think that the city response is good," he noted. "We have a plan in place."
There are 150 incidents of trees or limbs down on the city's list. We're told forty people were out Monday and Tuesday that number jumped to sixty. Jones believes the city should be back to normal in just two days.
Some looked at the aftermath of a storm that was not categorized as a hurricane and questioned the city's preparation for storm season. Nyeta Harris lives across the street from Hattie and wonders about the old trees on city property that are in danger of falling on hers.
"Girlfriend, I pray to God it doesn't fall on my house," she cried out.
We only found a handful of public works trucks out Tuesday, but the mayor maintains his trust in the system.
"I'm confident in it but I think God has a little bit more power than we do," he asserted. "So it's going to be difficult to keep up with him. So we're doing the best we can with it."
A big part of the city's post-Irene focus was the shelter system. That was not needed this time around.
Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.
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